What happened to Melissa Lee Brannen?
Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance
Missing Since: December 3, 1989 from Lorton, Virginia
Classification: Non-Family Abduction
Date of Birth: April 13, 1984
Age: 5 years old
Height and Weight: 3′0; 38 pounds
Distinguishing Characteristics: Light brown hair; blue eyes. Brannen has a burn scar on her right forearm.
NCIC Number: M-395923188
Details of Disappearance:
Brannen was last seen at a holiday party in the Woodside Apartment Clubhouse on December 3, 1989 in Lorton, Virginia. Her family resided in the apartment complex at the time. Brannen was wearing a navy blue sweater with a yellow applique of the Sesame Street character Big Bird on it, a blue and red plaid skirt, red tights, black patent leather shoes with gold bows and a pink hooded jacket when she disappeared.
Caleb Daniel Hughes emerged as a suspect in Brannen’s case almost immediately. Hughes was employed as a groundskeeper at Woodside Apartments at the time of Brannen’s disappearance. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) examined blood and fiber evidence from Hughes’ vehicle in the weeks following Brannen’s disappearance. He was convicted of abducting Brannen with the intent to defile in 1991. Two other men were convicted of attempting to extort ransom money from Brannen’s mother shortly after her daughter’s disappearance. The individuals were not connected to her actual abduction. Brannen has never been located. Foul play is suspected in her case due to the circumstances involved.
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact Fairfax County Sheriff’s Department 703-246-7800 or Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) 202-324-3000 .